There was a lively discussion over at Mike Duran’s blog last week regarding why Christians can’t agree about Christian fiction.
I chimed in a couple times, but not to add anything profound. Mostly I just watched the discussion unfold with interest. At the same time, I asked myself if the discussion was relevant to me personally.
I felt myself wondering, do I care about this discussion, or am I just fascinated by debate? Does the subject matter to me, or am I merely a rubbernecker?
On some levels, I suppose the state of Christian fiction does concern me. It must, since my current WIP probably falls into the category of inspirational women’s fiction.
My WIP also features a somewhat intimate scene between the protagonist and her husband, and somewhere in all those words (NOT during the intimate scene!) I use the word “pee” when I suppose I could have used “urine”.
The thing is, I haven’t read enough CBA fiction to know…is “pee” a “bad” word? If so, can I use the word “urine” instead? (I won’t, but could I if I wanted to?) Do CBA standards even allow the mention of a person going to the bathroom? (Because, oh yeah, there’s also a scene where my protagonist is sitting on the toilet.)
Maybe I’m too much of a realist, but I don’t mind a fictional character taking a potty break. Everybody poo’s. God created poo. (I don’t go into graphic detail in the bathroom scene, I handle it more artfully than that…but I do include sound effects from one stall over.)
See, I can’t go around bashing the CBA when I haven’t tested their products. While I don’t think Mike’s intent last week was to bash the CBA, I do think such discussions tend to gravitate that way. If I had read a good sampling of CBA fiction, maybe I could take part in the discussion and offer some helpful insight one way or the other, but unfortunately I can’t.
My novels may end up in the CBA. Who knows? I’m not ruling it out. If the CBA can’t handle an intimate scene between a husband and wife, or the mention of a few bathroom sound effects, well, my novels won’t end up in the CBA.
Do I care one way or the other? Should I care? I dunno.
Are CBA standards ever going to dictate the content of my fiction? Well, that would be my choice to make. I do know that no one will ever be holding a knife to my neck.
Maybe when I don’t have a toddler and a six month old, I’ll be able to consider these philosophical questions more intently. As it is, I have four modes: Go, Produce, Eat, Sleep. Ponder isn’t one of them. Not because I don’t want it to be…I just don’t have time to stop and think. 🙁
Did you observe or take part in the discussion over at Mike’s blog last week? If so, do you feel the discussion was relevant to you? Should Christians be concerned about the state of Christian fiction?